I will not lie, an attitude of gratitude has much evaded me this week. At times, it is circumstances, material possessions, some one elses attitude that can make me ungrateful. Right now I look out my window and I see two little girls sharing a can of Pringles, the salt and vinegar kind. I wonder if they will ever know or appreciate the fact that my husband and I biked over one hour to the store and an hour and half of walking/biking back just to have them devour those chips in probably less than 5 minutes. It is a sweet minute they don’t know I witnessed either way.
As I write this post, I took some time to look in my prayer journal and to reflect, unsure what kind of path as a family or individuals we are on. There are hearts of discontent as we currently have no spending money. There is a tangled web of reasons why no one currently has a “regular” job. We are spending our first month living off only my husband’s Social Security income, and child support payments that I receive. Taxes will be filed soon, but that is not something I can rely on to pay the bills. If any money comes in it will likely and prayerfully be used to procure a vehicle. We soon will be without a running vehicle for one month.
As I reflected, I remember the kids were out of school for Martin Luther King day, I walked past all the neglected chores, bags and boxes that had been sitting for weeks. We had two bikes that we had gleaned from a neighbors trash more than a year ago. Ancient ancestors of Huffy beach cruisers is what I call them. Instead of chores, my husband taught me step by step how to put inner tubes on each bike wheel so should I need to in the future I would now be able to. He used tools I had on hand, vice grips and flat head screw driver. (I don’t own many, because my ex husband left me with very little, not wanting any other possible male lover or family members to use them. Guys and their tools right.?) Bike one was fixed and in running shape. Bike two was a no go, the steel fibers in the tire were showing. It was 25.00 for one bicycle tire at Walmart. A quick Google search revealed that I could get two tires for 20.00 but the shipping was 24.99. The best deal I could find was 15.00 a tire with free shipping on orders over 25.00. That was the deal I wanted, but we (as a family) did not have 30.00 to be spent. We had never done much with the bikes, and I had even contemplated tossing them weeks before. I cannot believe when my husband applied pressure to the tires that the rusty parts that held the wheels on did not fall into rust dust. I was disappointed that we could only get one running, we could get more needed goods when there are two of us with two back backs to fill at the store.
Fast forward to January 22 and someone giving away a Roadmaster bike for free on a local Facebook site, it just needed an inner tube. We had an extra inner tube from not being able to repair our second bike. I expressed interest but we had not way to pick up the item. God made a way and the lady dropped it off to our door step!!!! She even had the inner tube to replace the broken one. So now we have two bikes to get to the store and don’t have to use just our two feet. (We have done that twice in the last month but it was brutal and a story for another day.)
All that being said to say I am thankful for one ancient ancestor of Huffy bicycle, rusty handlebars and all. It carried my now 252 pds to Walmart, and one free Roadmaster bicycle that carried my husband’s 6 ft 2 frame and 260 pds with 117.00 worth of groceries hanging from handle bars and tucked in back packs back from the same location. I am also thankful that our bodies can move in the ways necessary to ride a bike despite chronic invisible illnesses and pains. (There was also $2.02 spent on a 3 lb cat food for our ferret that we used spare change we have found laying around to pay for.)
Some other things I am thankful for is that our insurance covers transportation to medical appointments, even though they are some times late, and a return ride home can take up to two hours. My husband is still here despite our problems. I am thankful we have recently been able to go to church and mend some fences with extended family. Of course I am thankful for my children. I am thankful as well for the few friends that I have. I finally reflected and found my attitude of gratitude. What are you thankful for?
Comment below! Hiding in plain sight,
Masquerade Jade 🙂